Kite Squid’s Reference:
There are many brands, types and sources of fabrics for the modern kite builder. The most popular types are woven Ripstop Nylon Fabric and Polyester, These come in many weights and from several manufactures.
Most of these fabrics have a coating applied to reduce their hygroscopic properties and to reduce porosity. These coatings also stiffen the hand of the fabric, making it easier to sew accurately.
Every fabric has a use. There are pros and cons to every decision when we build kites.
Now to focus on Polyester
Pro or Con, Stretch. Polyester does not stretch much compared to Nylon, so I would select it for a smooth or light wind day. It is a poor choice for gusty days.
Con, Cost. Polyester fibers cost more to produce than Nylon and retailers have to pass that cost on to us. I wish kite materials were free.
PRO, Weight. Polyester is stronger than Nylon for the same weight, so you can fly a lighter kite with the same strength of a Nylon kite. Water does not bond to it, so it does not get heavier with use.
Pro Water: Polyester does not attract water. If you kite gets wet while flying in the rain or on a humid day, just shake the lines and watch the water drop off and feel your kite get lighter…
Kite Squid attended the AKA’s Grand National Kite Convention in Muncie and some of the sport kite flying was done in a light to medium rain. Every one with a Nylon kites had trouble later in their routines as their kite became heavier and the fabrics streatchd out of the desired 3D shape. The Polyester kites did not have that problem… Food for thought.
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